Salon Today | 10 Technologies: Online Client Surveys | Khiem Hoang for Umbrella Salon

By Rosanne Ullman and Stacey Soble | 07/26/2011

For more than 10 years, Khiem Hoang, business manager of Umbrella Salon in San Jose, California, had issued written surveys to gather client feedback. “But it seemed challenging to get people to fill them out.”

Khiem Hoang, business manager of Umbrella Salon in San Jose, California, designed an online client survey that provided the salon with solid feedback which helped shape some salon managerial decisions.

Khiem Hoang, business manager of Umbrella Salon in San Jose, California, designed an online client survey that provided the salon with solid feedback which helped shape some salon managerial decisions.

So this year, Hoang took the survey online with some amazing results, then shared the concept with fellow salon owners at the Owners’ Exchange at Oribe Backstage. Working from a hotel survey he’d completed as a guest, Hoang leveraged his e-mail newsletter service Constant Contact to create a quick, easy survey that gave the salon information about clients’ experiences on three key areas: with the front desk, their service provider and their overall impression on the job the salon was doing. “It was a user-friendly interface that they could complete on their computer or using a smartphone or iPad in five minutes or less. Each question was based on a ‘rate your experience’ type of survey.  We limited the number of required questions and I limited the rating scale from 1-3,” he says.

Although the comments section was optional, the information derived from it was valuable, says Hoang. “We posted all comments—both positive and negative—for service providers.”

To get client cooperation, Hoang sent out 2,500 invitations to take the survey, reinforcing that client opinion makes a difference to the salon. Clients were given 14 days to take the survey, and were offered an incentive—a 10 percent savings on product purchases at the completion of the survey. About 10 percent of sampling came back (a really strong number).

Hoang discovered about 80 percent of clients who competed the survey made a comment, and the majority of those were positive. But other comments are shaping the way the salon does business. “For example, one client wrote about his allergies and his concern about clean air in the salon. As a result we’ve installed a new ventilation system.”


Salon Today | Oribe Owners’ Exchange | Khiem Hoang for Umbrella Salon

By Salon Today | 07/25/2011

AT LAS VEGAS’ HARD ROCK HOTEL and Casino last May, the models strutted, the hair flew, and the crowds cheered for the iconic Oribe and his Oribe Backstage. The following day, the casino’s Muse theater transformed itself into Oribe’s personal pop-up atelier where hundreds of stylists followed the master’s techniques on more than 300 models.

But before all the on-stage action started, it was ideas that were ying in the Oribe Owners’ Exchange. Emceed by the company’s co-presidents, Tev Finger and Daniel Kaner, the day-long event featured two keynote speakers, then a series of best practice presentations, most from salon owners in the Oribe network.

To kick the day off, Paul Kessler, coauthor of Leading at the Edge: Leadership Lesson from the Extraordinary Saga of Shackleton’s Antartic Expedition, shared the tale of the ship AFR Midnight Rambler and its courageous win of the Sydney to Hobart Race to illustrate the characteristics of leaders performing at the edge. And, author Frances Cole Jones closed the day with inspiring ideas and role play from her book, How to Wow: Proven Strategies for Selling Your (Brilliant) Self in Any Situation.

In between, the exchange of great ideas occurred in a series of quick, thought-provoking presentations:

Khiem Hoang from Umbrella Salon, shared his strategy for conducting online client surveys.

• SALON TODAY Editor in Chief Stacey Soble offered 10 of her favorite salon owner ideas from the SALON TODAY 200.

• Sheridan Bates of Bocz Salon divulged his winning ideas for nding new clients.

• Bang Salon’s Lisa Garcia persuaded owners to green their salon systems.

• Mindbody’s Stephanie Jennings shared new ideas possible with technology.

• Marc Harris, of Salon Marc Harris, unveiled his plans for Salon Week.

• The Playlist Generation’s Michael Smith showed owners how music can further communicate their salon brands.

• Luxelab’s David Abrams inspired with some best management ideas.

• And, Bangz Salon and Wellness Spa’s Israel Kronk inspired with his innovative “Give to Get” marketing program.


Salon Today | Lived-in Styles from Umbrella Salon | Nathan Nguyen for Umbrella Salon

By Jan Hillenmeyer | 04/26/2011

The artists from Umbrella Salon in San Jose, California created a men’s style collection for the Oribe Portfolio photo contest. The looks grew out of a brainstorming session involving the entire salon team during which it was decided to hark back to the 90s grunge music scene, but with a With Nirvana playing in the background, the Umbrella team went to work under the art direction of salon co-founder/creative director Kien Hoang. Joined by Nathan Nguyen, the team decided on “natural, lived-in” looks for the models. Hoang says, the most memorable aspect of the shoot was “transforming a group of ordinary guys and giving them each The transformation was made possible with the use of Oribe Crème applied from roots to ends and air-dried. The looks were finished with Oribe Impermeable Anti-Humidity Spray.

Hair: Nathan Nguyen and the Umbrella Salon Team Photography: Vineta Grube